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Several times a day in What’s Next Blog I cover Internet strategy, marketing, public relations, politics with news and commentary. Here are some of the topics I’ve featured in the past few days:
* Robert Scoble’s Way Cool Surrender on China
The Microsoft evangelist/blogger got himself smack in the middle of a PR firestorm about Microsoft’s stance on freedom of speech for bloggers in China.
After a week of criticism, he apologized, saying:
“In the face of overwhelming evidence, I admit I’m wrong. Trying to justify the Chinese MSN word blocker is one of the more boneheaded things I’ve done.
* 20-Ton Attack of the Snapple PR Team. Doh!
Snapple’s 20-ton ice pop, an attempt at a new Guinness world record ended in a sticky, smelly mess in New York City’s Union Square yesterday.
* Spoof of Paris Hilton Carl’s Jr. “Spicy Paris” Commercial Hits the Spot It had to happen, because Paris Hilton is a parody of herself: imitators started popping up.
* BusinessWeek Brings Mass Collaboration to the Masses in Cover Story A key quote: “Ultimately, all this could point the way to a fundamental change in the way people work together….That rich reward may be worth all the disruption we’ve seen and all the more still to come.”
* Ketchum Public Relations set off a brouhaha of criticism from bloggers when they bumbled their way into the blogosphere this week with the announcement of a “Personalized Media” division to help corporations join the new media revolution spearheaded by blogging. Ketchum — which has no RSS feed, and which launched an incredibly lame blog days after their announcement, even more lamely, had no response to the hue and cry.
Ketchum is a prime example of how not to engage bloggers, many of whom pride themselves on their snarkiness. Bloggers demand transparency and openness and Ketchum, one of the largest global PR firms, failed to provide either.
Before advising clients on blogging, it is important to read, understand and interact with blogs; and to get their executives blogging to prove that they can sustain compelling writing. Ketchum has done none of these things.
And Ketchum needs to track what is being said about them. Either they are not doing that or they do not know how to respond to the groundswell of criticism. In either case, they’re not ready for prime time when it comes to blogs and any client who engages them for blogging will make a major mistake.